Hard water is a common problem for apartment dwellers. It can cause deposits to build up on your dishes and appliances, stain glass and tile, and make it difficult to keep skin and hair healthy.
The good news is that you can easily filter hard water in your apartment. All you need is a few simple steps and the right equipment.
1. Test the Water
Hard water isn’t just an annoying inconvenience to deal with; it’s also a health hazard. When water is too hard, it can corrode your pipes, lead to a buildup of scale on your appliances, and cause dry skin, hair, and laundry stains.
The good news is that there are plenty of products and strategies out there designed to make hard water a thing of the past. From apartment water filters to solutions that fight hard water stains, there are many ways to combat the problem and keep your water clean and healthy.
One of the first things you’ll want to do is test your water. This can be done through a home test kit that will screen for various contaminants, including water hardness and other toxins.
Some kits come in the form of strips that you stick under running water and compare to a chart to see what color it turns. Other kits use powders that you mix with water to give you the same kind of results.
You can also test your water through a bottled test, which comes with a plastic bottle filled with a small amount of liquid. If it bubbles easily and the rest of the liquid is clear, your water is soft. If it’s difficult to get a few suds to form, or the water appears cloudy and milky, your water is hard.
Once you know the water quality, it’s time to decide whether you need a filter. If you’re just concerned about the taste and smell, consider a filter that uses activated carbon to remove chemicals from the water.
If you’re looking for more comprehensive testing, you can have your water tested by a professional at an EPA-certified lab. This can be a costly option, but it’s usually covered by your community if you use municipal water or by the EPA if you’re using private well water.
If you’re renting an apartment and haven’t already gotten the test results, don’t hesitate to ask your landlord for them. They should be happy to help you out.
2. Install a Water Softener
A water softener is an important tool to reduce hard water buildup and help you avoid expensive plumbing repairs and damage to your appliances and pipes. There are a variety of options on the market, so you’ll need to test your water and decide which one is best for your needs.
Whether you live in a condo, apartment or any other type of rental property, it’s vital to make sure that you have access to clean, filtered water at all times. If you don’t, it can lead to a lot of problems including bad tasting water, clogged and damaged pipes and even health concerns.
If you’re living in an apartment, it’s a good idea to get a water softener installed as soon as possible. Not only will this improve your living conditions, but it’ll also increase the lifespan of your appliances and reduce instances of clogging.
In addition, a water softener can also extend the life of your plumbing system by removing calcium and magnesium deposits. These minerals can cause scale to form, which restricts the flow of water through your pipes and can reduce water pressure levels.
This can lead to expensive plumbing repairs, and it can also make your appliances and plumbing fixtures look unattractive. In addition, the buildup of hard water can affect your hair and skin as well, making them dry and flaky.
The most efficient way to soften water in an apartment is with a portable water softener or an electric water descaler. These devices use a process called ion exchange to swap out calcium and magnesium ions with sodium.
These devices are much smaller and more space-saving than traditional salt-based water softeners, but they still require some alteration to the plumbing in your apartment. Getting approval from your landlord is essential before you begin, but it shouldn’t be too difficult.
You’ll need to know the water’s mineral content and what kind of grain capacity you want. The most common grain capacity is 32,000 grains per gallon (gpg), but if your water is extremely hard, you may need to choose a larger unit.
3. Install a Water Filter
You moved into a new apartment with great layout, friendly neighbors and a convenient grocery store nearby. But you’re having trouble with the water. It’s not as clean as you thought it would be, and your hair and skin feel dry and brittle.
Your water can contain a range of harmful chemicals and impurities that are known to cause health problems, including cancer, thyroid disease and weakened immune systems. But you can avoid these issues by installing a water filter in your apartment.
Installing a water filter is a fairly simple process that can be completed in just a few minutes. The first step is to determine the type of filter that will fit your plumbing system.
A water filter removes contaminants and disinfection byproducts while also retaining vital minerals. It also prevents limescale buildup.
Choosing the best water filter for your apartment is a personal decision that should be made according to your needs and budget. There are various options available, from the cheapest carbon filters to the most expensive reverse osmosis water filter systems.
Some water filtration solutions use carbon technology that directly attaches to the faucet, while others are more complex and require a separate countertop installation. The countertop filters are typically more effective and less expensive than the faucet models, but the downside is that they take up space.
Choose a unit that is compatible with your home’s existing faucet and cold-water shut-off valve. The inlet and outlet should have universal faucet connections, so that you can easily replace your old filter with a new one if you ever want to do so.
Next, cut a section of pipe to accommodate the filter and any connecting fittings. This should be a size that will account for two tees and a shut-off valve. If your filtration system has a separate pre-filter, you may need to cut away more of the pipe in order to make space for that part of the filter.
Once you’ve removed the old filter, connect the new one using a hose to the cold-water valve. This will prevent the old filter from draining into the drain.
4. Replace Filters
If you’re looking to improve the taste and smell of your water, there are a few things you can do. First, you’ll want to choose a filter that will remove the chemicals that cause bad tastes and odors in tap water. You can buy filters that use activated carbon as a filter media or you can look for a water filter with ion exchange filtration technology.
You can also get water filters that are sized for your faucet. These will be easier to install than filters that need to be mounted at the waterline, but they aren’t as durable and you’ll have to replace them more often.
One way to make sure that your filters are sized correctly is to find them and write down the dimensions. This will ensure that you can purchase the right size for your apartment.
Most big box home improvement stores won’t carry a wide selection of air filters, but you can get custom sized ones from online retailers if the standard sizes don’t fit. If your filter is too large for the vents in your apartment, you’ll need to have it cut down to a certain dimension before you can install it.
Another important thing to note is that you need to change your apartment’s air filter on a regular basis. This will help keep you healthy and lower your energy bills.
A dirty air filter will not only clog the HVAC system but will also impede the efficiency of your cooling and heating systems. This is especially true if the filter hasn’t been changed in a while.
Changing your filters is easy and usually takes no more than a few minutes. The most important part is making sure that you are putting the new filter in correctly. To do this, turn off the power to the HVAC equipment and locate the filter.
Next, carefully slide the new or cleaned filter back into its housing with the air flow arrows pointing in the right direction. Once you’ve done this, restore the power to your system and turn it on.